Croatia Takes Step Closer to Visa-free US Travel

Croatia is on track to join the US visa waiver program after meeting a key eligibility requirement.

The scheme stipulation is for rejected Croatian visa applications to fall below 3%.

Over the past three years, the country is understood to have been working to reduce its refusal rate from roughly 5.9%.

According to the US Ambassador in Zagreb, Victoria J. Taylor, in September 2020, the United States rejected only 2.7% of tourist/business visa applications by Croatian nationals, an essential step forward in joining the US Visa Waiver Program. Taylor tweeted that Croatians should expect to be able to travel to the US visa-free “in the near future”.

The announcement comes after the “Passenger name Recognition” Memorandum of Cooperation was signed last year, a document that is also required for the visa exemption program.

Some additional requirements, however, must still be met in order for Croatians to be granted visa exemption for the United States.

Nevertheless, Taylor affirmed that “Croatia has committed to completing the remaining requirements in the coming year” and that updates would soon be announced as additional progress was made.

While all counties in the European Schengen Area are already part of the visa waiver scheme, Croatia is one of only four of the 27 EU countries (Cyprus, Bulgaria, and Romania) that do not participate in the visa-free program.

Foreign nationals of visa waiver countries are eligible to travel to the United States for purposes of tourism and business for stays of up to 90 days without a visa, provided they are granted US ESTA authorization.

US immigration advice

NNU Immigration are a team of London-based US immigration attorneys. We are advising employers, entrepreneurs, investors, workers and other non-US nationals planning to travel or relocate to the US on the changes in US immigration policy and immigration rules under the new Administration. Please contact our US immigration specialists for the latest advice for your specific circumstances.

This article does not constitute direct legal advice and is for informational purposes only.

Last updated: February 28, 2021